Extended School Year Students Virtually Travel the Country

Students from the Center for Instruction, Technology & Innovation have traveled the country, virtually, this summer as part of their Extended School Year.

Weekly online field trip opportunities for students enrolled in the CiTi BOCES’ Exceptional Education program have been made possible thanks to CiTi’s expansive Distance Learning connections. Students in Lisa Carney’s classroom recently participated in a Zoom videochat with a Rocky Mountain National Park ranger and a representative from the Pro Football Hall of Fame, among others.

Kristen Edwards, CiTi distance learning specialist, said the virtual connections have helped supplement the students’ summer learning. Since the ESY program has operated virtually in 2020, students have already become familiar with an online structure, so the addition of online field trips has been a bonus educational experience, she said. The academic connections have also blended with social-emotional learning cues, such as character and leadership.

Edwards said while Distance Learning connections have always been available to CiTi classroom teachers, but the remote-learning structure due to health and safety precautions surrounding the COVID-19 pandemic have afforded additional measures for teachers and students to explore even more video connection events.

“A lot of times people think virtual field trips are a pause of learning; they are designed to enhance what they are doing in the classroom,” Edwards said.

Educators interested in learning more about CiTi’s Distance Learning opportunities may contact Edwards at kedwards@CiTiboces.org or visit CiTiboces.org.